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Barbara Michelson: Executive Director

 

Giggle and Grow is honored to have as its director, Barbara Michelson, who comes to the school with over 28 years of Early Childhood experience. She has been a resident of Wayne Township since 1996, where she lives with her husband, Mark, and two children, Willie and Jessica, both teens. She is well known in the community for her involvement in many programs for youths and families, where she strives to make a positive difference for all.

 


Barbara has dedicated her life to enriching the lives of young children and creating many programs for them. She is a member of NAEYC (National Association for the Education of Young Children), SPA (Special Parent Association), and Foster Parent Organization, and volunteers for various organizations in Wayne. She is always looking for ways to outreach into the community and help where she can. She is the co-founder of a Special Needs Camp in the community, which, according to Barbara, is one of her most endearing volunteer efforts. Being a mom of a special needs teen gives her the determination to advocate for more inclusive programs in our community.

 

Barbara has a BA degree in Early Childhood Education and Elementary Education K-8th grade from William Paterson University. She has additional graduate-level courses from Weelock College along with hundreds of hours in training in the early childhood field. She provides workshops and training to other schools where she shares her knowledge and years of experience with other professionals. She has a passion for working with children and parents, which makes her the ideal director to lead Giggle and Grow to a lifetime of wonderful learning and opportunities for children and their families 


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Christine Guarente : Program Coordinator and Three Year Old Group Teacher

 

Christine is a graduate of Passaic Community College where she majored in Early Childhood Education. She is furthering her education at William Paterson University. She is First Aid and CPR certified. Christine has been working with young children for over 7 years. Our school is extremely lucky to have such a dedicated and talented teacher nurturing and educating our young children.

Kailie Simpson : Pre School Teacher Assistant

Kailie attends William Paterson University . Her past experience includes working with young children in the childcare setting.

 

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Juliette Ryan: Teacher's Assistant Three Year Old Group


CPR and First Aid Trained


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Cindy Guarente: Young Three's Co-Teacher


CPR and First Aid Trained

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Rachel Parente: Kindergarten Teacher

 

CPR and First Aid Trained

Miss Rachel is our Kindergarten teacher who has her Masters Degree in Literacy Instruction from Caldwell University. She also has her K-5 certification in Elementary Education as well as her P-3 endorsement in Early Childhood Education. She received her BA from Rutgers University in Psychology. Prior to becoming our Kindergarten teacher, Miss Rachel taught our Pre K class.

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Nancy Hulbert:  Pre-K Assistant Teacher


CPR and First Aid Trained

Nancy comes to Giggle and Grow with over 19 years experience in working with preschoolers. She is the staff member who opens our school every day and who known by all the parents as the teacher with tons of school spirit. Nancy resides in Wayne with her husband and two daughters.

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Leslie DeWilde: Pre-K Teacher


CPR and First Aid Trained Associated Degree from Bergen Community College in Early Childhood and Science. In addition studied music education At William Paterson University.


Previously owner and director of a Mortessori Education School. Leslie comes to Giggle and Grow with many years of experience and compassion for teaching young children.

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Laura Rikowich: Young Three's Co- Teacher


CPR and First Aid Trained

Alexas Edison: Alexas is the Assistant Teacher of the Three's Class


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Casey Wright: Volunteer


We are delighted to have Casey, as part of the Giggle and Grow staff.She is our school volunteer assistant and helps with all age groups.

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Susie O"Sullivan: Substitute


Susie is our full time substitute and teachers assistant in our Sprouts class.

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 Mariela Tapia: Sprouts Co Teacher

I attend Passaic County Community College Student. As a future teacher and leader with great responsibility, I believe enthusiasm should be kept at all times to maintain a child's attention. Children need to develop many skills at an early age. We as teachers have the privilege to lead our students to create new experiences and build different expectations. My goal is to have my own classroom where I can guide my students throughout the endless road of education and meet their full potential. I love working with young children and Giggle and Grow is the perfect environment where a teacher and a student will grow together day by day.
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 Gabriela Tapia: Sprouts Assistant Teacher


I am a Paterson Pre-college Teaching Academy graduate, majored in Child Development Education. I had the great opportunity to work with young children for the last 5 years of my life. I love to work with children. Recently my last experienced was with a two year old serving as a nanny. Excited for this year, I plan to return to school to develop more my teaching skills. I am very grateful with Giggle and Grow for giving me the opportunity to work in the perfect environment surrounded with the little people that I enjoy. Is a great experience and I am very proud to be part of the Giggle and Grow Family.

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Kathi Gazzano: Technology Instructor


Kathi has her CDA in Early Childhood Education and works each day with our preschoolers. She has taught preschool and technology to young children over the past 15 years and comes to our school with a true love for educating young children. Kathi resides in Wayne with her family.


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Dawn D'ambrosio:Sprouts Lead Teacher


Prior to working at Giggle and Grow, Dawn cared for young children in her home for over 28 years. She is dedicated, compassionate and loves taking care of our youngest Sprouts. Dawn joined our school in September of 2015 and plans to stay on for many years nurturing and caring for our babies and young toddlers.


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Linda DeGennaro:Afternoon Sprouts Teacher

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Traci Brangando: PreK Fours Teacher

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Caitlyn Lopes: Teacher Assistant in the young 3's CLASS


Caitlyn is working towards her CDA and her Associated Degree in Early Childhood Educations

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